Jacoway, Elizabeth 1944-

views updated

Jacoway, Elizabeth 1944-

PERSONAL:

Surname is pronounced Jay-co-way; born June 16, 1944, in Little Rock, AR; daughter of Bronson Cooper and Daisy Jacoway; married Timothy Fagan Watson (a lawyer), September 7, 1978; children: Timothy Fagan, Jr, Todd Cooper. Education: Attended Randolph-Macon Woman's College, 1962-64; University of Arkansas, B.A, 1966; University of North Carolina, M.A, 1968, Ph.D, 1974. Politics: Democrat. Religion: Episcopalian.

ADDRESSES:

Home—Newport, AR. E-mail—[email protected]

CAREER:

Historian, educator, writer, and editor. University of Florida, Gainesville, assistant professor of behavioral studies, 1972-75; University of Arkansas, Little Rock, assistant professor, 1975-78, associate professor of American history, 1978—. Also taught at Lyon College, Batesville, AR. Has served on the Executive Council of the Southern Historical Association, the Board of Editors of the Journal of Southern History, and the Boards of Directors of the Arkansas Historical Association, the Southern Association for Women Historians, and the Arkansas Women's History Institute; has also served on planning committees for the Little Rock Central High School Museum Visitor's Center and the Penn School Museum.

MEMBER:

Organization of American Historians, Oral History Association, Southern Historical Association, Southern Association of Women Historians (past president), Arkansas Women's History Institute (founder and past president).

AWARDS, HONORS:

National Endowment for the Humanities, grant, 1975, fellowship, 1976; grant from American Philosophical Society, 1977.

WRITINGS:

Yankee Missionaries in the South: The Penn School Experiment, Louisiana State University Press (Baton Rouge, LA), 1979.

(Editor with David Richard Colburn) Southern Businessmen and Desegregation, Louisiana State University Press (Baton Rouge, LA), 1982.

(Editor) Behold, Our Works Were Good: A Handbook of Arkansas Women's History, Arkansas Women's History Institute (Little Rock, AR), 1988.

(Editor with others) The Adaptable South: Essays in Honor of George Brown Tindall, Louisiana State University Press (Baton Rouge, LA), 1991.

(Editor with C. Fred Williams) Understanding the Little Rock Crisis: An Exercise in Remembrance and Reconciliation, University of Arkansas Press (Fayetteville, AR), 1999.

Turn Away Thy Son: Little Rock, the Crisis That Shocked the Nation, Free Press (Northampton, MA), 2007.

Contributor to books, including Notable American Women, The Encyclopedia of Southern Culture, and The Encyclopedia of South Carolina; contributor to history and urban studies journals, including Journal of Southern History, Arkansas Historical Quarterly, Alabama Review, and Reviews in American History.

SIDELIGHTS:

Historian Elizabeth Jacoway grew up in Little Rock, Arkansas, during the Little Rock desegregation crisis in the late 1950s and has gone on to research that crisis over a thirty-year period. As a result, she has written several books focusing on these events. In her 2007 book, Turn Away Thy Son: Little Rock, the Crisis That Shocked the Nation, Jacoway presents an account of the integration of nine black students into Central High School in Little Rock in 1957. Using extensive interviews with witnesses, politicians, and students who were attending the high school at the time, the author explores the issue of integration in the 1950s. In addition, she focuses on the white leadership in Arkansas and Little Rock, including the militant governor Orval Faubus. She also writes about the black student Elizabeth Eckford, who experienced the rage and death threats of whites as the first black student to enter Little Rock's Central High School. Juan Williams, writing in the Washington Post, noted that the author "argues that the fear of black men having sex with white women was the hidden yet powerful dread that inspired much of the opposition to enrolling nine black students at Central." Williams went on to write in his review: "Jacoway's version of events is a deliberate—and convincing—counter to the way the story was told by Arkansas's top journalist of the time."

Jacoway generally received good reviews for her historical retelling of the events at Little Rock. A Kirkus Reviews contributor called Turn Away Thy Son "a lucid and revealing key to events of half a century ago, when moral suasion and self-interest together ‘trumped racist values in Arkansas's capital city’—and beyond." Craig Flournoy wrote in the Dallas Morning News that the book "is a brilliant account that ranks as the single best history of the desegregation battle in Little Rock."

Jacoway is also a coeditor of The Adaptable South: Essays in Honor of George Brown Tindall. The book's essays, which focus on Southern culture, are all written by former students of Tindal, a professor of history at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and considered one of the preeminent historians of the South. "His former students executed a job well done in utilizing Tindall's major analytical observations about the South while paying tribute to this eminent scholar of the New South era," wrote Tyler O. Walters in the Mississippi Quarterly.

BIOGRAPHICAL AND CRITICAL SOURCES:

PERIODICALS

American Historical Review, December 1, 1983, Walter B. Weare, review of Southern Businessmen and Desegregation, p. 1343.

Arkansas Democrat-Gazette, March 18, 2007, Stanley N. Katz, "The Central Crisis at 50: A New Book Finds Failure All Around."

Arkansas Lawyer, January 1, 2007, Vic Fleming, review of Turn Away Thy Son: Little Rock, the Crisis That Shocked the Nation, p. 31.

Arkansas Times, April 4, 2007, Garrick Feldman, review of Turn Away Thy Son.

Book World, March 18, 2007, Juan Williams, "Shadow over Segregation: Did Sexual Fears Fuel the 1957 Crisis over Letting Black Students into Little Rock's Central High?," review of Turn Away Thy Son, p. 4.

Booklist, November 15, 2006, Jay Freeman, review of Turn Away Thy Son, p. 4.

Books, January 14, 2007, "Recounting Little Rock via History and Memory," p. 5.

Business History Review, March 22, 1983, Monroe Billington, review of Southern Businessmen and Desegregation, p. 137.

CHOICE: Current Reviews for Academic Libraries, June 1, 2000, C. Maroufi, review of Understanding the Little Rock Crisis: An Exercise in Remembrance and Reconciliation, p. 1895.

Dallas Morning News, February 25, 2007, Craig Flournoy, review of Turn Away Thy Son.

Journal of American History, December 1, 1981, review of Yankee Missionaries in the South: The Penn School Experiment, p. 676; June 1, 1983, Hugh Davis Graham, review of Southern Businessmen and Desegregation, p. 204; December 1, 1993, Randall M Miller, review of The Adaptable South: Essays in Honor of George Brown Tindall, p. 1114.

Journal of Southern History, August 1, 1989, review of Behold, Our Works Were Good: A Handbook of Arkansas Women's History, p. 532; August 1, 1996, Robert J. Norrell, review of The Adaptable South, p. 626; May 1, 2001, review of Understanding the Little Rock Crisis, p. 485.

Kirkus Reviews, November 1, 2006, review of Turn Away Thy Son, p. 1112.

Library Journal, September 15, 1982, review of Southern Businessmen and Desegregation, p. 1752; December 1, 2006, Thomas J. Davis, review of Turn Away Thy Son, p. 140.

Mississippi Quarterly, March 22, 1993, Tyler O. Walters, review of The Adaptable South, p. 330.

Publishers Weekly, December 4, 2006, review of Turn Away Thy Son, p. 48.

Reference & Research Book News, February 1, 2000, review of Understanding the Little Rock Crisis, p. 133.

Southwestern Historical Quarterly, April 1, 1990, Ruthe Winegarten, review of Behold, Our Works Were Good, p. 546.

Washington Post, March 18, 2007, Juan Williams, review of Turn Away Thy Son, p. BW04.

ONLINE

Simon & Schuster,http://www.simonsays.com/ (June 28, 2007), brief profile of author.

Turn Away Thy Son Web site,http://www.turnawaythyson.com/index.php (June 28, 2007).

About this article

Jacoway, Elizabeth 1944-

Updated About encyclopedia.com content Print Article